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Transatlantic - Bridge Across Forever

Well, here we go again with this lot's second outing.  Messers Mike Portnoy, Neal Morse, Pete Trewavas and Roine Stolt have produced a fine album to put with your all time prog classics, like `Close To The Edge`, Foxtrot and Tarkus! This one feels more like a `band` effort than the first one. Don’t get me wrong, the first one is a great album, but this one feels more produced and polished.

The opening track, `Duel With The Devil` takes you on a journey through the lands of `Spocks Beard`, The Flower Kings, Yes, Genesis and Pink Floyd, not bad for 27 minutes! The playing on this track is at its best, with stacks of in your face Hammond and Mellotron too, building up to a `Dark Side Of The Moon` type ending. With Neal and Roine taking the mic, it is in my opinion the strongest track.

The next one, `Suite Charlotte Pike` is an out and out rocker, with shared lead vocals again, and a middle you could say is very Beatles come Jellyfish sort of sound. A bit of humour creeps in too, with a certain beer taking the reins! ( Wasssupp!)

The title track , `Bridge Across Forever`, is this album’s ‘We all Need Some Light’ a very moving song, and you could place it at a funeral or a first dance at a wedding (not a death march then, Dan? – Ed). Just a piano and Morse, and you have a great song!

Another longy at 26 minutes closes the album. `Stranger In Your Soul` is another epic, with a pounding Hammond again, and with a more Dream Theater type edge to it than any of the other songs. There is a strong Genesis riff during this, and a perfect number to end the album.

If you are fast enough to get the 2 CD version, you get the band’s own renditions of Floyd’s Shine on You Crazy Diamond, Deep Purples Smoke on the Water, the Beatles And I love Her, and various demos and other versions of the albums songs. There is a good piece of Roine’s demo bits, which gives you a good idea of his input and writing skills. I bet he and Neal between them could compose a 24 CD album box set with the amount of stuff they turn out each year.

The band is on tour during November 2001 in Europe. I have my ticket and am looking forward to it.

Danny Mayo




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